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Dems playing the race 'deck' in midterm elections

Cal Thomas

By Cal Thomas

Published Nov. 4, 2014

 Dems playing the race 'deck' in midterm elections

Forget the race "card." In this election, Democrats have been playing the entire race "deck."

The Wall Street Journal has listed some of the more outrageous ads and flyers designed to frighten African-Americans into believing that all opposition to President Obama's policies and to the Democratic Party is a sign that lynch mobs may soon return.

The milder stuff includes a letter to black voters from the Democratic National Committee appealing for racial solidarity. Imagine the response if Republicans asked for racial solidarity from white people.

As the Journal reports, "The harder, nasty edge is playing out in individual campaigns. The Democratic Party of Georgia is distributing a flyer that shows two young black children holding signs that say 'Don't Shoot.' The flyer reads: 'If You Want to Prevent Another Ferguson In Their Future ... VOTE.'"

The flyer refers to the shooting of Michael Brown by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, and the turmoil that followed.

In North Carolina, reports the Journal, "black residents have received flyers that show a lynching scene, with the superimposed words: 'Kay Hagan doesn't win! Obama's impeachment will begin! Vote in 2014." Sen. Hagan, the junior senator from North Carolina, is a Democrat.

In Maryland, where Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown is in a close race with Republican Larry Hogan, the state Democratic Party sent out a flyer. As reported by The Daily Caller, it contains this passage: "'They've placed roadblocks in our path at every turn.' It features pictures of a 'colored waiting room' sign, a 'must show ID to vote' sign, racists marching against civil rights and Donald Trump superimposed over a billboard reading 'Where's the birth certificate?'"

Sen. Mary Landrieu, a Louisiana Democrat in her fourth term, has claimed the reason she is in a tight re-election contest is because of racism and sexism in the South. Insulting and stereotyping voters is not a good strategy. Makes you wonder about those "racists" and "sexists" who voted for her before, doesn't it?

It has always mystified me why so many African-American voters remain loyal to the Democratic Party when that party -- and especially the first black president -- has done nothing to improve the circumstances of the poor among them, except to continue the addiction of too many to government checks.

According to statistics compiled by the University of Michigan Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, in 2010, 22 percent of children under 18 lived in poverty and among those 38.2 percent were black. Hispanics, another constituency Democrats are courting, had 35 percent of their children under 18 in poverty.

The public may be waking up to the failure of these programs. Roughly $20 trillion has been spent on anti-poverty programs since the launch of The Great Society in 1964. According to a Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll last year, 24 percent of respondents chose "too much government welfare that prevents initiative" as the reason for our poverty problem. Eighty-three percent said work should be required of those receiving welfare.

Given the failure and cost of these programs and the blaming of racism as the main reason too many African-Americans remain mired in poverty, in prison and without fathers in the home, why do more than 90 percent remain loyal to a political party that has robbed them of hope?

The answer must be in the voices they listen to, including the voices of teachers in failing public schools that Democrats won't let them escape from, students in those schools who bad-mouth successful students for "acting white," preachers who preach of a political salvation that never seems to arrive, instead of genuine salvation that can transform a life by changing the way one thinks, and politicians who pretend to be the friends of African-Americans on Election Day, only to abandon them the very next day.

When the last votes are counted in this election, many African-Americans who vote for Democrats will likely not find their lives improved by the crafty politicians who used racial scare tactics to court them and get them to the polls.

On Nov. 5, the race deck will still be stacked against them. Maybe they should try the other party just to shake things up.

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Cal Thomas, America's most-syndicated columnist, is the author of 10 books.

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